Shetland Islands Citizens Advice Bureau   Shetland Islands Citizens Advice Bureau
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AIMS and OBJECTIVES

The twin aims of the CAB service are:

  • To ensure that individuals do not suffer through lack of knowledge of their rights and responsibilities, or of the services available to them, or through an inability to express their needs effectively; and equally: 
  • To exercise a responsible influence on the development of social policies and services both, locally and nationally.

The two aims are complementary. By providing an advice service, bureaux deal with clients’ problems on an individual, day-to-day basis feeding back information to the bodies responsible for policy making. The bureau endeavours to prevent problems from recurring and similar problems from arising.

Principles

All member bureaux must comply with the association’s conditions of membership, which includes 12 principles. The main principles are:

A free service – The bureau provides information, advice and assistance (including representation) free of charge. It does not withhold its services from any client seeking help because they are believed to be able to pay for help from an alternative source. The service is advertised to the public as being free of charge to ensure that members of the public are not discouraged from taking advantage of the service for fear of incurring expense.

Confidentiality – The bureau provides confidentiality to clients. Nothing learned from clients, including the fact of their visit, will be passed on to anyone outside the service without express permission of the client. Although it is a function of the service to exercise a responsible influence on the development of social policies concerning matters which have been brought to light in the course of assisting  clients, no details will be made public which might enable clients to be identified without their express consent.

Independent – The service provided by the bureau is completely independent. The policies and practices of the service are decided solely by the member bureaux.  No other individual or agency, even if they are giving financial support or other aid to the bureau, will influence the decision making process of the bureau.

Impartiality – The service provided by bureaux is impartial, it is open to all, and is regardless of any subjective opinion as to whether or not the client is deserving. Bureaux advisers are trained to provide information solely on the basis of its potential usefulness to the client, i.e. information will not be selected to conform to any particular point of view. Representations made on behalf of clients will faithfully attempt to express the client’s personal intentions and points of view.

The other principles are:

  • accessibility
  • effectiveness
  • community accountability
  • client’s right to decide
  • a voluntary service
  • empowerment
  • information retrieval
  • a generalist service

 

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